Windows 10 Won’t Update? (Try these Solutions)

Windows 10 Won’t Update? (Try these Solutions)

/ Shayne Sherman

Usually, when there’s an error or issue on your operating system, updating applications and your device are one of the fastest troubleshooting options. Unfortunately, there are cases where you need help updating your device or your browser as well.

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Windows updates are essential for all of its tools and programs on your PC, below are listed solutions to try if you need help updating Windows 10.

Check Permissions and Your Network Connection

Many significant updates require the administrator account’s permission to be installed on the operating system updates. The windows update service is very secure and doesn’t release any of your private information when installing any updates to your device.

Ensure that you have checked your notifications from Windows on your operating device if your Windows 10 won’t update.

Also, check your internet connection if there are no notifications other than “there’s an update available,” but you can’t install it all. If your network is going in and out, you may have to wait for a more robust and stable connection before updating.

Delete Third-party Security Software

Corrupted system files or any third-party application running on the device may cause several functionality errors. The same goes for windows 10 won’t update the error. Suppose you cannot install the latest version of Windows on your device. In that case, it must be an issue related to third-party security software containing files or cookies impeding the operating system’s automatic update on the device. Here are the steps for deleting the third-party software to initiate the standard update mechanism of windows.

Step 1: Launch the control panel by typing control and then double-clicking the option to launch the utility.

windows search control panel

Step 2: Select the program and features option in the control panel window.

programs and features

Step 3: In the list of all third-party applications and software installed in the device, select the respective windows security software. Right-click the option to select uninstall from the drop-down menu.

uninstall third party security

Check Windows Update Utility Manually

If windows 10 is not updating automatically, then there must be an issue with the windows update feature of the device. In this context, manually checking the windows update utility and running appropriate fixes is the solution for windows 10 won’t correct the error. Here are the steps to follow:

Step 1: Launch settings from windows key+ I via keyboard. In the settings menu, select the option of update and security.

windows i keyboard shortcut

Step 2: In the Update and security window, select windows update from the left pane.

Step 3: In the next step, check the windows update. If the problem is with the in-build update feature, click on fix issues.

fix issues button

Step 4: Select advanced options for a detailed analysis of the error. In the next window, select the option of automatic for choosing how to proceed with the windows update. Restart your device to check if the error exists.

windows update advanced options

Services about Windows Update Running

There are several services linked to windows updates. If windows 10 updates, those services might run, leading to errors. Here are the steps for checking the status of windows updates services on the device.

Step 1: Launch Run utility via windows key + R from the keyboard, and in the command box, type services. msc. Click ok to continue.

run services msc

Step 2: In the services menu, select the option of windows update and right-click the option to choose properties from the drop-down menu.

windows update service

Step 3: In the properties window, click on the startup tab and select the automatic option startup type. Check the status of windows update services; if it is stopped, click start to activate the services. Select Apply and then ok to save changes and complete the action.

start windows update service in window

Step 4: Navigate to Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS) option in the services menu and right-click the option to select properties from the drop-down menu. In the properties window, choose startup type as automatic and status as running. Click apply and then ok to save changes.

start windows update automatically

Step 5: Repeat step 4 for Cryptographic Service. Restart your device to check if the error persists.

Run Windows Update Troubleshooter

Using a troubleshooting utility for fixing various OS errors is the most straightforward approach. It helps to run a complete scan on the device to detect the loopholes causing errors and suggest viable solutions to fix the mistakes; the same goes for windows 10 won’t update. Using the windows update troubleshooting option can resolve the problem. Here are the steps to follow:

Step 1: Launch settings from the windows main menu and select the update and security option from the settings window.

windows update and security

Step 2: In the update and security window, select the troubleshooting option and choose additional troubleshooters.

additional troubleshooters

Step 3: In the troubleshooter window, click on the window update option and run the troubleshooter. Restart the device to check if the quick fix worked.

run windows update troubleshooter

Restart Windows Update Service with CMD

If you have checked the status of windows update services and they are working fine till you receive the error message, i.e., windows 10 won’t update, then restarting the services can resolve the error. In this regard, services can be restarted via the command prompt on the device. Here is how you can accomplish this.

Step 1: Launch the command prompt by typing the command in the search box of the taskbar. Double-click the option to launch the command prompt as administrator.

run as admin cmd

Step 2: In the command prompt window, type the following commands and click enter after each ordered command line to complete the action. Restart the device to check if you get any error codes.

net stop wuauserv
net stop cryptSvc
net stop bits
net stop msiserver
ren C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old
ren C:\Windows\System32\catroot2 catroot2.old
net start wuauserv
net start cryptSvc
net start bits
net start msiserver

net stop commands

Increase Free Space of System Drive

Windows 10 won’t update may also result due to space issues on the device. If the device does not hold enough space to support the installation of the latest version, then the update will not proceed. In this context, freeing up space on the device is one safe option, and disk management for disk cleanup is a practical option. Here are the steps to follow:

Step 1: Launch the Run utility via windows key+ R and in the run command box, type diskmgmt. msc. Click ok to continue. It will launch disk management.

diskmgmt command

Step 2: In the disk management window, select the option of the system drive. Right-click the option to choose properties from the drop-down menu, which will launch the disk cleanup window.

disk management drive properties

Step 3: Allow your device to estimate the free space. From the list of files and folders, select the files you want to delete. Click ok to proceed.

disk clean up option

Step 4: In the following pop-up window, click delete files to complete the action.

select disk and files to delete

Repair Corrupted System Files

Corrupted or damaged system files associated with the windows update utility may also result in windows 10 won’t update errors. The best solution is to fix the corrupted files with DISM and SFC (system file checker) scans. SFC runs a quick scan to analyze all system files and identifies damaged files along with appropriate quick-fix solutions. Here are the steps to run the SFC scan.

Step 1: Launch the settings window from the main menu and select the update and security options.

Step 2: In the update and security window, select the option of advanced options followed by selecting the command prompt.

command prompt in advanced options

Step 3: In the command prompt, type sfc /scannow and click enter to continue. Once the scan completes, it will help to check all protected system files and replace the corrupted one with its cached copy.

sfc scannow

In the case of running a DISM scan, i.e., a utility used for repairing windows images, e.g., windows setup, windows PE, and windows WinRE. Here are the steps:

Step 1: Launch the settings window from the main menu and select the update and security options.

Step 2: In the update and security window, select the option of advanced options followed by selecting the command prompt.

dism scan

Reinstall Windows 10 if you Can’t Successfully Update the Browser

If you are having trouble installing a Windows 10 update, reinstalling Windows 10 may help. This will restore your computer to its original state, and you can then try installing the update again. If you have any important files or documents on your computer, back them up before reinstalling Windows 10.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Windows 10 Won’t Update

Why has My Windows Update Failed?

Windows updates failing to download could be caused by many things. One possibility is that your computer is not connected to the Internet. Ensure your computer is plugged in and the network cable is plugged in properly. Your antivirus software also may be blocking the update, so make sure that your antivirus software is turned off and then try to install the update again.

If your computer is up to date, there may be a problem with Microsoft’s servers. Try installing the update again later when the servers are less busy. Your computer’s hard drive may also be full; try to delete extra files and install the update again.

Why is My Windows Not Automatically Updating?

One possible explanation is that your Windows Update settings may be incorrect. To check your settings:

1. Open the Control Panel and double-click on the System icon.
2. When the System window opens, click on the Advanced tab and then click on the Settings button under the Windows Update heading.
3. When the Windows Update Settings window opens, ensure that the Automatically Download Updates and Install Them radio button is selected and then click OK.

Do I Need More Storage Space for a Windows Update?

Windows will notify you that you need more space to install the update if you are running low on disk space. You must free up space on your hard drive to install the update.

How do I Download Windows Updates?

Windows Updates can be downloaded through the Windows Update website or the Microsoft Update website.

How do I Use the Windows Update Troubleshooter?

1. Open the Control Panel by pressing the Windows key and typing “Control Panel” into the search bar.
2. Click on the “Windows Update” icon.
3. Click on the “Troubleshoot problems” link.
4. Click on the “Windows Update” link.
5. Click on the “Run the troubleshooter” button.
6. Follow the instructions on the screen to complete the troubleshooting.

Will a System Restore Help Update Windows 10?

Yes, a System Restore can help execute an update to Windows 10. If your computer is not downloading data correctly, you can use a System Restore to restore it to a previous point where some settings might return to their default states. This can help fix some problems and also update Windows 10.

Shayne Sherman
Meet the author

Shayne is an expert on all things Microsoft Windows and computer security. As a Windows user of over 30 years, he has been featured on Business Insider, Yahoo, Tech Republic, Hacker Noon, Techopedia, and many other publications. Aside from entertaining at his home theater, he enjoys spending time with his family, including his English bulldog, Fergie.